16 February 2012

Ed Young, Jr.'s C3 2012 Conference: Just Another Seeker-Driven Line-up

First, 2012 witnessed the Code Orange Revival, fresh off of the heels of that came the Elephant Room 2 conference, followed by the ONE Conference and who knows how many in between. After all, what would the start of a new year be without a slew of Seeker-Driven conferences back-to-back to inspire all of us ordinary folk to audacious faith? What would we do without the same stale exciting line-up of speakers teaching us how to do more so that God can finally unclasp His hands and bless us?

This week's entertainment comes to us via Ed Young, Jr., Fellowship Church, and the C3 2012 Conference. If you so desire, you can view the evening session and worship online. Past speakers at this event have included such now-household names as "Bishop" T.D. Jakes, Joyce Meyer, Brian Houston of Hillsong Church and of course, Steven Furtick. In fact, if I'm not mistaken, I believe it is now considered grounds for public rebuke if one fails to invite young Prophet-Pastor Steven Furtick to speak at one's conference. I hope someone gets the message to Dr. John MacArthur quickly, before next month's Shepherd's Conference, because as of the writing of this post, Furtick is nowhere to be seen in that lineup of faithful, biblically grounded teachers.

Ed Young, Jr.'s 2012 C3 Conference features many of the usual names. Furtick is of course included, along with fellow Seeker-Driven and quasi-Word Faith teachers like Kevin Gerald, Steve Munsey and Stovall Weems. Upon closer examination, it seems as though the C3 Conference lineup solicited many of its speakers from the famed Code Orange Revival and the ONE Conference. Perhaps this is another reason that these conferences always occur in such brief succession; maybe it allows these speakers to save on airfare.

(Online Source)
If seeing this line-up of speakers doesn't get you adequately "pumped," then you may want to trot on over to the C3 2012 website and watch the series of promotional videos that each scheduled speaker recorded specifically for the event. Doing this may help spark your excitement, especially as you listen to each man rave about Ed and Lisa Young. Just to give you a flavor, here's Steve Munsey of Family Christian Center:

For some insight into some of that creativity that Munsey took away from last year's C3 conference, you can read the article A Christmas Carol: The Church Service. Yes sir, nothing says Jesus Christ, God incarnate come to live a perfect life and be crucified for our sins like a rousing rendition of A Christmas Carol...

Stovall Weems, who the reader may remember was one of the prized speakers at January's Code Orange Revival, is also very excited about C3 2012:

So, if you are lucky enough to be attending C3 this week, you'll "have a blast" and learn how to develop a "creative culture in your church." Super.

Finally, let Kevin Gerald's endorsement of this event ring in your ears:

Yes, that's right. If you'd like to "walk away inspired to do more, to reach higher, and to extend ... into new territory," then this is the conference for you. If you are seeking Law with no Gospel, then C3 2012 may be just the place to find it!

The reader may recall that we were first introduced to Kevin Gerald in the post Steven Furtick Is Lookin' for the Favor. This article took a brief look at some of the teaching that was propagated by Gerald in his teaching "Favor Forever," and pointed out that,
You’ll hear such biblically ignorant teachings as Christians may “expect preferential treatment” because of our association with God. Hm. Funny, seems to me to be the opposite in today’s world! Gerald teaches in his first message that we can expect favor from both God and man! I guess Paul had it all wrong when he said, “For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.” (Galatians 1:10). In Part 2 of this series, which is loaded with law and works-righteousness, Gerald says that our “thoughts attract and draw like magnetic forces,” which is why we need to be cautious about negative thoughts. After all, he says, God created us to be “very powerful” beings. (Online source).
The idea that our thoughts have power is typical Word-Faith doctrine and Kevin Gerald has proven himself to be little more than a Joel Osteen wannabe. But, he has a large church, and that seems to be one of the primary prerequisites to be a speaker at Young's C3 Conference.

To listen to the promotional videos for this event is to gain the impression that, though it may be marketed toward "church leaders," there is very little church-centered or even *gasp* Jesus-centered teaching that will take place. These promo videos laud Ed and Lisa Young and extol the wonders of the creative ideas one will glean from C3, but they fail to reveal what role Jesus will play, if indeed He will be allowed a cameo appearance at all.

In fact, looking at many of the tweets coming from the official C3 Twitter hashtag, C3 2012 is proving to be another forum for these men to preach about the awesomeness of you:
(Online Source)
One more conference, one more breeding ground for narcissistic eisegesis. One more place where the true Gospel likely will be ignored.

"Code Orange" Speaker Kevin Gerald
The ONE Conference is Set to Invade Miami
Is Steven Furtick Supressing the Truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ?


  1. They are pumping this thing up so much, it reminds me of an Amway convention.

  2. I got involved with a new church plant recently and my pastor and youth pastor were re-tweeting this all day. They did the same for Code Orange.

    I can't really explain why, but something about the whole situation has made me very uneasy almost from the start. I don't want to let anyone down by leaving, but I feel a strong urge to run back to my previous church (smaller but very Reformed confessional).

    I've only listened to Furtick and that crowd some, and I've heard some good thing from him, but there's just something that makes me uneasy about him and this whole crowd/movement.

  3. Good Lord help us, they are starting to run in packs. And their all infected with conference-itis.

    @Jennifer "...and I've heard some good thing from him.."
    That sister, would be leaven, and not the right kind. For example when people get food poisoning they rarely feel sick as soon as they take a bite, but the poison is there nonetheless. I thank God you pay attention enough to the written word to have that spirit given sense of unease.

    @EB Why, oh why do you torture us with these videos? They make watching Barney over and over appealing.
    Thanks for another fine piece.

  4. Is James MacDonald going to be there?
    What in the world is Lee Strobel doing at this thing?

  5. Watched the videos... Nauseating. These guys act, look and talk like a bunch of badly dressed used car salesmen. Creativity? Why don't you start first with your wardrobe for crying out loud. I am sure you all are getting nice checks for your story telling so use it. These guys would not make it anywhere no wonder they are story and joke tellers... Lee Strobel is an exception but if he hangs out long enough with these folks then...

  6. Very clear that none of you have a clue about what Ed Young preaches or for that matter what was/ has been said at this C3 or past C3's. The gospel is the center. Period. We have been members at FC for 13 years and have never once heard any heresy being preached. We have only heard biblical based preaching that people understand and can apply to there life. We have seen so many people come to Christ at FC. Alot of you speak about the mentioned pastors in regards to there preaching of being blessed and taking versus out of context...blah blah. Funny thing is usually when someone is criticizing what they are preaching, YOU take what they say out of context. By the way ....a main focus @ C3 is always reaching the lost.....which I might add most of these pastors are doing very well at doing so. WHAT THE HECK ARE YOU DOING TO REACH ANYONE BUT YOURSELVES?

  7. @ Jennifer, there is a reason you are feeling very uneasy. Look for the christian apologetics "fighting for the faith" web site and listen to a couple of $teven Furtick sermon reviews. If your church loves him then RUN AWAY!!!!!

  8. @Jeff Raiser,

    Unless the requirement is to eat lunches with Ed Young or have "personal conversations" with him WE DO KNOW what he preaches... There is this thing about the net that you can actually listen and watch other people and I did enough of that to know that what he preaches is a mixture of ear tickling lies with some truth which you people at FC swallow gladly and I guess that is why Ed is flying around in jet performing his cabaret/stand up comedian show as he did for example at Code Orange pep talk festival. If C3 focus is truly "reaching the lost" as you assert certainly none of that is visible in those lame commercials for this show. Instead the "new level" and "creativity" are mumbled mantras. Of course that does not have to be accurate representation of what will go on at your C3 show but if one is reasonable one can assume that more likely or not C3 will follow this route. As to taking out of context "usually" does not cut it. Ed Young is using the Bible according to the principle of Russian roulette...

  9. Jennifer,
    The uneasiness that you have felt is the Holy Spirit. Yes, you will hear "some good" from any false teacher. That is the danger. When the truth is mixed with error, it is a dangerous and deadly combination. Be a good Berean and test all that you hear against Scripture. Pray for discernment and wisdom. It is a prayer that God will most certainly answer!

    As Anonymous 2/17 suggested, www.fightingforthefaith.com is an excellent resource for biblical critiques of Steven Furtick's sermons.

    In my defense, I did not force you to watch the videos. :-) Just be thankful that I didn't post video of Brian McLaren's "Majestic Mystery." Now that is torture.

    Anonymous 2/16,
    Nope, MacDonald isn't there. I suppose he might still be cleaning up after the elephants. As fro Strobel, let's not forget that his history includes working on staff at Willow Creek and involvement with Saddleback.

    Jeff Reiser,
    There's not much to add to what Despeville has said. Ed Young, Jr. does not teach in a bubble. We know what he espouses and, while it may sound good and make everyone feel warm and fuzzy, the bottom line is that he twists Scripture. Just because people raise their hand and "make a decision" does not mean that people are being brought to a true, repentant, saving faith in Jesus Christ. While I most certainly hope that they are, I fear that teaching like Young's is merely bringing people to the worldly Jesus who promises a more exciting and creative life filled with "big dreams" and "audacious faith," not the Jesus of the Bible who cleanses sin and regenerates wicked, dead hearts.

  10. @ EBenz

    I am truly disheartened with the direction of my church, Calvary Church of Kendall (CCK). Reading these things only confirms my discerning heart. My Pastor (Pedro Garcia) has had a major overhaul in the past 2 years. By overhaul, I mean that his persona....the way he dresses and the way he presents God's Word has done a 180. No more verse by verse. He has been the driving force behind the radio station down here in Miami (Life FM) and the recent One Conference. He embraces Carl Lentz (who particularly I cannot support with his facade) and the beloved Ed Young. When I saw this it brought to mind the saying of "tell me who you are with and I'll tell you who you are."

    My Pastor is focused on and I quote from last week’s sermon, being a church that is “Fresh” and “Edgy” to appeal to the ”younger generation.” When I was saved I it had nothing to do with the smoke or lights or Worship music on stage. It had to do with having “an ear to hear.” Go to http://vimeo.com/37071333 to see the sermon

    I feel that John Mac Arthur is spot on with some of his views on the church’s new movement and emphasis on “pop-culture.” I have been in denial and waiting for “the season” to end. It seems that it has only begun. With the “success” that my Pastor is having with having a FM radio station ministry, his “exposure” to this new Christian “cool” culture fad has exploded.

    It’s saddens me to say that I am currently looking for a new church and have yet to find one here locally.

    Thank you for this information that you post.


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